Rugby league community unites to help brave Kelsie

Accepting the cheque: Derek Beaumont, MD AB Sundecks;  Dean Balmer, friend and fundraiser;  Zoe Ashcroft, Kelsie's Mum; Paul Rowley,  Coach Leigh Centurions
Accepting the cheque: Derek Beaumont, MD AB Sundecks; Dean Balmer, friend and fundraiser; Zoe Ashcroft, Kelsie's Mum; Paul Rowley, Coach Leigh Centurions

A CHARITY event to raise money to help the grandaughter of a former Leigh RL player raised a magnificent £10,000.

Brave Kelsie Ashcroft (pictured), devoted grandad, Kevin Ashcroft’s ‘little tiger’ is battling a brain tumour.

And £30,000 is needed to send the six-year-old to America should the treatment she is undergoing now need further enhancement.

Kevin said: “Kelsie is in good spirits at the moment – she’s a little tiger.

“People have already been absolutely marvellous. The support we have received has been phenomenal and I can’t thank everyone enough.

“But if we could get up to £30,000 that would be brilliant.”

Kelsie, a pupil at Christ Church CE Primary School in Pennington, was diagnosed with Atypical Pontine Glioma in brainstem and has recently begun treatment.

The touch rugby tournament and family fun day took place at Leigh Miners Welfare Club in Twist Lane.

Kevin’s team included Leigh RL legends John Woods, Tony Cottrell and Des Drummond amongst others.

They played against local teams include two from Paul Rowley’s Leigh Centurions.

The event has already attracted attention from local and national past rugby league players who will enter teams to battle it out to be crowned overall winners in the ‘Caring for Kelsie’ campaign.

Also on the day were Lee Hansen’s famous ‘Hog Roast’, bouncy castles, face painting, a licensed bar and entertainment along with a big raffle with prizes including VIP holidays and Legends shirts to be won.

More than 10 teams entered including local amateurs, pub teams and ex pros, legends and current Leigh Centurions players. The winners were the Leigh Centurions Past Players.

A music night with three different performers ended the event, and despite the constant rain together with donations the £10,000 cheque was presented to Kelsie’s mum, Zoe.